Israeli firm inaugurates 2 MW solar project

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - A subsidiary of holding company Israel Corp said it had inaugurated a 2 megwatt solar energy project, the country’s largest private solar field, to supply power to residents of southern Israel.

The Infrastructure Ministry also announced on Wednesday it would issue five new tenders next month to build solar fields in Israel’s Negev desert to produce a total of nearly 50 MW.

The government this week approved plans to accelerate the building of solar power stations around the country to help reach a goal of producing 10 percent of the nation’s energy from renewable sources by 2020.

IC Green Projects, a unit of Israel Corp, one of Israel’s largest holding companies, said its photovoltaic solar plant had cost about 30 million shekels ($8.4 million). It said the funding came from Israel Discount Bank, Israel’s third-largest bank.

Israel has about 12,000 MW of total installed power capacity.

Writing by Ari Rabinovitch, Editing by Jane Baird